One of the most amazing
and important accomplishments of infancy and early childhood
is the development of language. Babies start to say their
first words around one year of age
and in no time (around
age 4), they know more than 1500 words and begin telling
stories. Language skills developed during the preschool
years serve as a wonderful foundation for learning in school.
Children with solid language
skills often become strong readers and writers. When a baby
is born with a hearing loss, this process of developing
language can be delayed. Such delays can be prevented or
reduced through early detection of hearing loss and intervention.
Family members can encourage a baby's language, listening
and speech during natural daily routines. The following
section includes important information about early intervention,
development of communication with your baby, ideas for nurturing
language development, and support opportunities for the
Started: What is Early Intervention?
Families of children with hearing loss have many questions
about early intervention. In this section, you will find
answers about when and where to get started, infant /family
services and specialists, technical terms, home visits,
and support services.
Our Support Team
A vital part of becoming parents of a baby with hearing
loss is finding the best support for you and your whole
family. In this section, you will find the reasons for developing
a strong system and ideas for finding the support that is
right for you.
As parents you have the right and responsibility to make
decisions. In this section, you will learn about the decisions
that you will find yourself making and how to get the information
you need to make appropriate decisions for your baby and
As parents, you want to have conversations with your baby.
Your baby wants to communicate with you. Whether your child
is hard of hearing or deaf, this section will have ideas
for communicating in the modality you have chosen to use.
Your baby wants to ask you a lot of questions about the
world. You want to answer the questions. Everything is new.
Everything needs words. In this section you will find suggestions
for giving your baby answers to questions about the world.
Babies need help to develop the security and appropriate
behavior that will let them grow up happy and responsible.
In this section are some effective parenting techniques.
Learn how they can be adapted to fit the communication needs
of your family.
from the Family
Babies with hearing loss need a whole family to support
their learning. This section has suggestions for helping
even extended family members to include your baby in every
aspect of daily life.
Play is a baby's work. Through play, babies learn to master
the physical and social environment. In this section, you
will learn ways to help your deaf or hard of hearing baby
participate in many of the play experiences babies need
in order to grow.
with Your Child
Children whose parents read with them tend to have good
language and to do well in school. Reading with babies who
are deaf or hard of hearing requires special skills. This
section will present the techniques, challenges and rewards
of reading with your child.
Ready for School
Deaf or hard of hearing children attend school in a variety
of settings. In this section, you will find out about regular
settings that are adapted for children with hearing loss,
and settings that are specifically designed for children
with hearing loss.